The New York Giants will hope to finish their continuing mission to rebuild their offensive line in 2023. They hope to have their offensive tackles for the future, but they still need to find long-term answers for their offensive interior.
TCU’s Steve Avila has experience at both guard and center, which could give him the versatility to fit in wherever he is needed. If the Giants want a big, powerful blocker, Avila could be at the top of their wish list.
Games Played: 33 (13 starts in 2022)
Best: Size, play strength, competitive toughness, run blocking, versatility
Worst: Long speed, top-end quickness and agility
Projection: A starting interior offensive lineman in a power-focused scheme.
(Avila is TCU LG number 79)
Steve Avila is a massive, powerful, and surprisingly nimble interior offensive line prospect from TCU.
Avila has played multiple positions along TCU’s offensive line, having started at right tackle, right guard, and center over the last three seasons. Avila is at his most comfortable at guard and center, with the traits to play either at the NFL level.
Avila has solid natural leverage at 6-foot-3 with great thickness in his upper and lower bodies. He has a surprisingly flexible lower body, allowing him to settle into a compact stance and consistently play with good leverage. He maintains a wide base throughout the rep, allowing him to easily meet and overcome power rushers. Avila has surprisingly light feet for a big lineman and is able to change directions quickly enough to deal with athletic interior rushers or pick up stunts along the line of scrimmage.
He is at his best blocking for the power run game and is a people-mover in man-gap or counter runs. Avila has a definite “nasty” streak as a blocker and looks to finish plays with his defender on the ground. He consistently works to sustain his blocks through the echo of the whistle and looks for work if he doesn’t initially have anyone to block. Avila has enough athleticism to play in inside zone schemes, as well as enough range to act as a puller or get out in front of screen passes.
That said, Avila is best described as “athletic for a big man”. He lacks great foot speed or range to be asked to block in space on a consistent basis. Avila can block in outside zone schemes, but he likely wouldn’t be a great fit in an offense that is based on a swift offensive line. Likewise, Avila can struggle to match up against particularly athletic pass rushers. Teams with undersized – but quick – defensive linemen could look to create an athletic mismatch against Avila.
Avila also has relatively short 32 ⅝-inch arms. That could be a concern for teams particularly concerned with arm length.
Overall Grade: 7.8
TCU interior offensive lineman Steve Avila projects as a starting guard or center at the NFL level. Avila has the versatility to play either position well at the NFL level and could slot in wherever his team needs. He has plenty of power and leverage to man the guard position, while also having enough initial quickness and agility to be considered for center at the NFL level.
Avila doesn’t have complete scheme diversity and might be an awkward fit in a “Shanahan” style zone blocking scheme. However, he has enough athleticism that he can execute an inside zone scheme without issue and should be able to execute outside zone runs on occasion. Avila doesn’t have great range as a blocker, but he can get out and pull when necessary.
Avila’s experience and ability to start at either guard or center should give him considerable value for NFL teams. Unlike some “guard only” or “center only” prospects, Avila should appeal to almost any team in need of an interior lineman. He certainly isn’t perfect, and teams might ask him to drop some weight in hopes of him becoming a more well-rounded athlete.
But even so, teams that are looking for an anvil in the middle of their offensive line will certainly be intrigued.